Following the success of their 3 earlier EP outputs and the live performances, International black metal duo Darvaza created their own earmark of occult and ritualistic art. Founded in 2015 by the multi-instrumentalist Omega (Blut Aus Nord, Chaos Invocation, Fides Inversa, Frostmoon Eclipse, etc…) and vocalist Wraath (Behexen, Dark Sonority, Mare, Ritual Death, and more), they return after four years of silence, continuing to be relevant to the Nidrosian style of black metal. Their first full-length album “Ascending Into Perdition” is a dark and sinister endeavor in which the talented musicians seek to achieve new musical grounds. The vast diversities of the charging vocals imbue dark ritualistic chants with the entrancing singing of satanic hymns put on focus throughout. It’s natural to get deeply drawn to such aspects of music that give it a fierce and malevolent tone.
The opening track “Mother of Harlots” is a testimony to the band’s own songwriting prowess that makes Darvaza’s music unique and different from some of the other Nidrosian acts. Wraath’s demonic vocals add textures to the music and the clean chanting is very captivating. Pounding percussive overflows the music with energy, and the pure black metal riffing sounds so sinister. The result is an uncanny amalgam of traditional black metal that showcases the ever-changing patterns of the thundering riffs. The main idiosyncratic feature of the album is the mysterious atmosphere packed with dark tremolos and almost in every track the vocals are defined by the majestic growls.
Beyond their fascination for the second wave of black metal, Darvaza presents the modern cult of the unorthodox style. Second track “The Spear And The Tumult” brims with an otherworldly eeriness. The occult alchemy of the catchy guitars spews mystical melodies and the dark undertone of the bass is melded into harsh ritualistic vocals. Menacing howls, powerful growls drift like soundscapes as if the music itself becomes in contact with the creatures that lurk beyond our dimension. The hypnotizing effect of the guitar is quite entrancing and the rattling drums wield powerful blows, the riffing is played as a counterpoint to the transcendental vocal lines. Superb mid-tempo maneuvers of the drums grasp the cadence with the tempo changes, reaching the point where the musical dynamics and phrasing become one.
“Ascending Into Perdition” has a different composition of elements with the kind of spiritual performance that feels like a ritualistic experience. The way the instrumentation is brought to effect broadens the duo’s take on black metal. Though I’d say that Darvaza and Mare share some similarities the musical execution makes them both unique. Given the excellent guitar arrangements, the incandescent riffs deliver an otherworldly atmosphere, its uplifting melodies shimmer with dark qualities. “Mouth of the Dragon” is less atmospheric than the previous one but the cohesive unity of the drums and guitars shifts into a vicious destructive sound. The powerful drum rattling and tremolos provide a pitch-black canvas for the sinister growls. Though you can hardly find any Nidrosian black metal band offering a vast variety of styles such as Darvaza.
“This Hungry Triumphant Darkness” moves into the old school territory and the guitars blaze hellfire riffs. Initially I was surprised by the direction of this track as it combines elements of punk with black metal. “The Second Woe” returns to the earlier malicious sound where the sinister vocals utter high-pitched growls, screams, and whispers. Heavy guitar chunks composed of the most complex riffs and rhythmic tremolos are flawlessly layered over the pounding drums. There is so much depth and atmosphere that forges demonic themes and the somewhat unsettling Georgian chanting adds a religious mood to this fabulous track.
Darvaza knows how to create a supernatural ambiance and their musical ethos carries some influences from Mayhem. The drums are intricately layered and they act as a potent instrument that offers a complex set of patterns together with the guitars. If you are familiar with the Norwegian band Enevelde, you will come to notice the patterns of the lead guitars having a similar sound. Closing with “Silence In Heaven” which begins with a cinematic intro this nine minutes track would insert extreme black metal riffs and multi-facet vocals.
Powerful rhythm holds the flow of the music and the shimmering lead guitars unfurling hints from the Canadian black metal bands such as Forteresse and Panzerfaust. The resulting catchy tremolos, obscure melodies, frenzied drumming, and quasi-operatic vocals would remind you of Attila Csihar (Mayhem). The ritualistic mood that encapsulates this song creates a magical aura thus Darvaza on the first full-length album rendered six majestic tracks that counter the epic scale of its occult symphony, this comes with high recommendations for fans of Mayhem, Mare and, Behexen.
Release Date: February 4th, 2022
Label: Terratur Possessions
- Mother of Harlots
- The Spear and The Tumult
- Mouth of The Dragon
- This Hungry Triumphant Darkness
- The Second Woe
- Silence in Heaven